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Ethics/Professional Responsibility

Jun. 7, 2024

Client transgressions: What to do when a client plans to commit a crime

Lawyers who face ethical dilemmas when dealing with clients who propose or commit illegal acts may consult their firm’s in-house or outside counsel specializing in liability issues.


Lawyers often counsel clients on how to stay on the right side of the law. But there can be risks for lawyers, clients, and the pubic when a client informs their lawyer that they are considering conduct that could amount to a crime.

Sometimes this issue arises in less obvious ways. For example, a long-time client trying to assist a parent’s medical care and expenses might ask for guidance on how to circumvent required filings or forge an ...

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